Hello Friends, I have to tell you that chocolate cake is one of my favorite things in the world. This post even includes homemade chocolate frosting. We usually call it icing in the south. You know how much I love to bake. I am a cake person and I love almost all cakes. My husband, on the other hand, loves pies. Check out this post I did awhile back on making a great coconut cream pie. But my husband does love chocolate cake probably more than I do so when I make one I know I will not be eating the entire thing myself. So here goes. This is going to be a four layer cake because I like to split the layers so that I have lots of room for the yummy chocolate cake icing. So here goes:
Use your favorite cake mix. Cake mix is so easy and inexpensive. I always keep several in my pantry. You can just do so much with them. My favorite cake is yellow or white cake with chocolate icing. I think it offsets the chocolate a little. Now don’t get me wrong chocolate on chocolate is never a bad thing to me. But I usually prefer yellow or white cake with chocolate icing.
Mix your ingredients according to the directions on your cake mix. I always grease the cake pans with solid Crisco and flour them before baking. This is a great way to make sure that your cakes do not stick.
Pour the batter evenly into two 8 x 2 inch round cake pans. Again bake according to the directions on the cake mix.
Before removing the cake from the cake pan, and you should do this as soon as you take it out of the oven, I use a little trick to flatten the top of the cake. This makes it easier when stacking the layers. I put a paper towel on top of the cake and then put a small saucer on top and flatten it just a little. Then just turn the pan upside down and the cake should pop right out. I put them each on a plate with a paper towel under them so they can cool completely.
After the cakes have cooled completely, and if you want to split the layers, this is the best way to do it. This little handy tool is called a cake cutter or cake leveler. It is almost like magic. You can get one at Walmart or on Amazon. A leveler can be used to split a cake into two thinner cakes or just slice the dome of the cake off to make it smooth. I use the small plate and paper towel for this I think that is easier. But when it comes to splitting a cake this handy dandy tool is just the thing. It is adjustable so that you can evenly split the cake. It cuts through the cake like butter. I promise You might be able to do this with a knife if you are Martha Stewart. And remember you don’t have to split the layers you can keep it to a simple two layer cake and you don’t have to worry about the leveler.
This is such a simple chocolate icing recipe. My mama always made her icing like this and I loved it. I have had no complaints about mine. I always double the recipe: I use two sticks of butter, softened, 12 tablespoons of cocoa ( the powdered cocoa in a can) a one pound bag of powdered sugar and Half & Half. I like to use Half & Half because it makes the icing so smooth and creamy. You can use milk, and if you do, make sure to use at least 2% or whole milk. It usually takes about one cup of Half & Half for the icing. I also flavor with a tablespoon of vanilla flavoring. If you are keeping it to a two layer just use half of these ingredients.
Mix the butter and cocoa together first. Make sure the butter is softened. Also, I sift the cocoa and the powdered sugar to make sure there are no lumps or bumps in the icing. Add the powdered sugar and Half & Half in a little at a time.
Now you have a bowl of yummy chocolate icing. If you doubled the icing recipe you will probably have extra left over. You can store it in the refrigerator for several days.
I always put a little icing on the plate before I put down my first layer.
Turn the cake upside down if you didn’t split the cake this will be the bottom. This makes your cakes stack a lot easier whether you are doing two or four layers.
When you put the icing on the first layer don’t worry about crumbs getting in the icing. You are going to cover up that first layer with more cake and more icing.
Add the second layer. If you split your cakes this will be the bottom of the first layer.
Continue with the layers until you get to the top. Make sure the top of your cake is the outside top of the layer so that it will be fairly smooth.
Put a large scoop of icing on the cake and start spreading it along the top of the cake. Always keep the icing in front of your spatula or knife or whatever you are using to spread it. This will make sure you are not digging into the cake and picking up crumbs. At this point you do not want to see crumbs in your icing.
And the finished product. You can swirl the icing a little and use a pastry bag and an icing tip to pretty up the edges, but you don’t have to it’s going to be yummy anyway.
Now grab a big glass of milk or your drink of choice and enjoy!!!!
Oh and don’t forget to LICK THE BEATERS!!!!! That’s the best part.
Love your day your way!!